My children (bless their hearts*) have entered this phase in which they are constantly screaming.
They scream when they are happy - "Papaaaaaaawwwwwww!!!!!!"
They scream when they are sad - "Paaaaaandddeeeeeee!"
They scream when they are angry - "AAAAARRRRRRRRR. You are sooo mean!"
They scream when they are bored - "EEEEEEE! It wasn't me, it was the pony."
They scream when they are together or separate or hungry or sleepy or just woke up or in the car or on the lawn or in someone else's house. They scream when they see me, my mom, Jerry, Uncle D, their dad, a cartoon on TV or a rainbow.
Or, you know, air.
I figured that by having my kids four years apart, I wouldn't be dealing with the simultaneous phase, but there you have it... screaming.
So, the question arises, how does one deal with screaming. I've tried to reason with them about inside volume levels and such. I've tried yelling at them, which seems counter productive. I've tried punishing. I've tried bribing. I've given begging a shot and I've even appealed to their sense of empathy, "Mommy has such a headache. Do you think we could keep the volume down? For mommy's poor head?"
The screaming continues, unabated. And my head pounds, likewise unabated.
This morning as they were screaming at each other (a favorite variation), I broke down and asked them, "What am I supposed to do to make you guys get along and lower the volume?" I asked.
"Spray us with water," replied Brynna.
"Yeh, spay us with hot-hot water," added Maren.
"Oooh, hot water. Good call. That'd teach us. And when we are good, you can spray us in the mouth, and when we are bad, you can spray our hair," amended Brynna.
"Or our eyes," complied Maren.
So - there you have it. Spray your kids in the eyes with hot-hot water when they scream.**
* You know how ticked off a Southern woman is by her use of "bless their hearts." In this case, very.
**Of course, in the interest of not being a psychopath you should probably not do this. Although, maybe if I spray myself in the ears with hot-hot water, I won't mind the screaming so much.